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Humanizing the Total Customer Experience

There’s a running joke at our agency about the famed industry “ecosystem slide.” You know what I’m talking about - that one presentation slide that attempts to visualize how every single consumer touchpoint plays a unique role, yet connects with every other touchpoint to form a cohesive customer experience. Maybe it’s a Venn diagram. Maybe it’s a table. Or, my personal nightmare, the “Beautiful Mind” approach– a bunch of floating platform icons with a web of lines connecting them all in one tangled ball of confusion. “Look!” we say. “This is your brand ecosystem! See how beautifully and simply it depicts the total customer experience?” “OK, John Nash,” our clients say, before dropping it into a desktop folder to gather digital dust.

 

Brand EcosystemAs marketers, it’s important to consider ecosystems, journeys, and the end-to-end customer experience. But these concepts can be hard to truly grasp when talking about them in the abstract, or out of the context of how an individual person experiences a brand and its products.

 

The reality is that in the digital age, our avenues of information are so diverse, our digital and physical spaces so entwined, that a customer journey is no longer linear or simple. At any given stage in the marketing funnel, a person might bounce around from Instagram, to billboard, to blog post, to text exchange and back in mere minutes. Even when this journey is simplified and beautifully designed to look at in aggregate, there’s a lack of realness to it– and a lack of true comprehension.

 

So how do we start to truly understand what the modern customer experience looks like without making our heads explode? Let’s get out of the abstract.

 

The AMP Strategy team is on a quest to humanize the total customer experience. Over the next several months, we’ll be doing first-person deep dives into the experience of shopping, purchasing, and returning across industries. We’ll map out real paths to purchase, identifying pain points and emotions along the way, to surface real industry insights and areas of opportunity– and share them right here on AMP’s blog.

 

Because at the end of the day consumers are human, and we need to understand them as humans. The true customer experience cannot be captured on a slide.

 

- Greer Pearce, VP of Strategy

 

Meet Our Humans

Greer

Greer Pearce, VP of Strategy

Outdoorswoman, jazz singer, tween culture obsessive

 

Ben

Ben Seldin, Strategy Director

Nike addict, political junkie, wanna-be foodie.

 

Elle

Elle Elderd, Associate Strategist

Savory over sweet, mixer of drinks and vinyls, runs on espresso

 

Jen

Jen Herbert, Senior Strategist

Literary fiction addict, almond croissant enthusiast, frequently-disappointed Chicago Bears fan

 

DJ

DJ Weidner, Strategy Director

Backyard grilling fanatic, year-round iced latte connoisseur, occasional salmon and halibut fisherman

 

james_herrera_new

James Herrera, Director, Experience Strategy

Life-long LA Dodgers fan, believer in the beginner’s mind, finds reading science non-fiction oddly satisfying

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Community Service Ideas For MLK Day 2021

This Monday is Martin Luther King Jr. Day. Observed on the third Monday of every January, this holiday celebrates the Civil Rights leader’s life and the legacy he leaves behind. Martin Luther King Jr. Day is the only federal holiday designated as a national day of service, encouraging people to volunteer in an effort to help improve their communities. Considered a “day on” instead of a day off, many of us at AMP are dedicating today to helping support our communities – and we encourage you to do the same. Here are some of the ways you can give back to your community this MLK Day. Volunteer or Donate to a Food Bank or Organization Want to help folks in need?  Try volunteering at your local food bank to help feed the people in your community. If you’re not able to volunteer in person this year, think about collecting some food to donate.  These organizations below are great places to get started: Feeding America Meals on Wheels Donate to a Charity Organization  Looking for something you can do from home?  Consider making a donation to a charity of your choice. There are a number of excellent causes and organizations that you can donate to this MLK Day, including these non-profits: MLK Community Hospital Children’s Trust  Movember  Participate in a Neighborhood Clean Up Interested in helping improve your community?  Gather a small group of neighbors and lead a neighborhood clean up. Your group can pick up litter, plant trees and flowers, and help neighbors clean their yards. Be sure to observe social distancing and wear a mask and gloves.  Walk in an MLK Day March Want to celebrate the life of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr?  Search for local MLK Day marches and celebrations that you can safely attend. Encourage friends and family to also attend or volunteer at events and organizations around the country. If you’re interested in learning about more service opportunities, check out this directory.   

Google Search Trends Insights December 2020

In our continuing series of examining Google Search Trends to gain insights into the top keywords queried in the USA, we present our findings for December 2020. Every day, we capture the top three keyword phrases in terms of search volume as reported by Google Trends (US Only). Each term has an estimated query volume attached to it, which we also record. The number scale tops out at 10,000,000+ with a lower limit of 200,000+. After the conclusion of the month, we look at the phrases we collected along with their volumes to get an understanding of what drove queries for the month. The Last Month of 2020 It’s been quite a year, eh? After November with all of the election query volume, we weren’t sure we’d have the energy to craft another examination of Google Trends data. Thankfully, if we learned anything from this year, we know that we are more resilient than we ever imagined and we have the strength to write as many articles as needed to close out the year. Even though December didn’t have an election, there were plenty of things that people found interesting and turned to Google to find more information. Here are the highlights from the data we collected from Google Trends. December Doodles The keyword phrases with the most queries were all attached to Google Doodles in December 2020. They were the only phrases reported as having 10 million plus queries. Sudan the last male northern white rhino - 12/19/2020 - 10,000,000+ queries Winter Solstice Great Conjunction - 12/20/2020 - 10,000,000+ queries New Year's Eve - 12/30/2020 - 10,000,000+ queries Each of these phrases were connected to a Doodle that sat at the top of Google.com. Every click on the Doodle drove users to the Google result page with the phrase populated in the search box. The case and the punctuation are copied exactly as they are reported in Google Trends so if the phrase has multiple words in lowercase, that’s what we report here. The first keyword is related to the ongoing rhino conservation efforts and the dangers of extinction. With Jupiter and Saturn appearing close to each other in the sky, there was a Doodle created to celebrate a vision that has not been seen in almost 800 years. Lastly, Google had a Doodle up for NYE. The AMP team finds it interesting that the days of the query volume are shifted one day ahead of the actual event (Example: New Year’s Eve is December 31st, not December 30th). This shift in the data may be due to how Google Trends is measuring the beginning and ending of days. An earlier start time could account for this shift. Holidays December is known for its holidays. Here are the phrases that we categorized as Holiday terms. Best Buy - 12/14/2020 - 2,000,000+ queries Santa Tracker - 12/23/2020 - 5,000,000+ queries Merry Christmas wishes - 12/23/2020 - 500,000+ queries Merry Christmas - 12/24/2020 - 1,000,000+ queries Restaurants open on Christmas - 12/24/2020 - 500,000+ queries Happy New Year 2021 - 12/30/2020 - 1,000,000+ queries Ball Drop 2021 - 12/31/2020 - 1,000,000+ queries Best Buy made the list because they had sold out of gaming consoles and were restocking on the 15th. The Santa Tracker is a perennial favorite, but is the popularity waning? Search query volume for this phrase peaked in December 2018. Santa may need a little more PR next year. Along with the other Christmas phrases, we saw the utilitarian phrase of  “Restaurants open on Christmas” made the top 3. We hope that restaurants received more orders this year as the pandemic has taken a large toll on the industry. Finally, there were more New Year’s Eve queries including one related to the famous ball drop. What Are We Going To Watch? We saw a good number of queries related to streaming video content. Here’s the list of shows and movies that were noteworthy in December. Selena Netflix - 12/3/2020 - 500,000+ queries Mandalorian - 12/18/2020 - 2,000,000+ queries Mandalorian - 12/18/2020 - 1,000,000+ queries The Midnight Sky - 12/23/2020 - 500,000+ queries Soul - 12/24/2020 - 1,000,000+ queries Wonder Woman 1984 - 12/25/2020 - 5,000,000+ queries The Mandalorian’s Season 2 finale was so popular that it made the top 3 twice (somehow) on the 18th. Glitches like this one are not new to the AMP team, but we report them just the same.  The big winner appears to be Wonder Woman 1984, which received the most query volume of any video content related phrase. Broadcast TV drove queries too, but at smaller volumes.  Timothee Chalamet - 12/12/2020 - 1,000,000+ queries Who Won 'The Voice' 2020 - 12/15/2020 - 500,000+ queries LeAnn Rimes -12/16/2020 - 500,000+ queries There were a couple of celebrity names queried because of their appearance on shows.  Timothée Chalamet hosted Saturday Night Live and LeAnn Rimes won this season’s The Masked Singer competition. People also wanted to know who won The Voice this year, but clearly the winner’s name wasn’t that important. Gaming and Tech News There were some notable keywords that are related to video games, for good and bad reasons, that made the daily top 3 in December. Fortnite Season 5 - 12/1/2020 - 1,000,000+ queries Cyberpunk 2077 - 12/7/2020 - 1,000,000+ queries Cyberpunk 2077 - 12/7/2020 - 500,000+ queries Cyberpunk 2077 - 12/9/2020 - 1,000,000+ queries On December 1, Fortnite Chapter 2, Season 5 launched and is set to end on March 15, 2021. Cyberpunk 2077 had a large promotion and made the top 3 twice (again, somehow) on the 7th.   The game launched on the 10th of December, but news of glitches and poor performance on game consoles drove queries even higher. Beyond video games, there were other tech related keywords that made our list. Spotify - 12/1/2020 - 2,000,000+ queries Airbnb stock - 12/9/2020 - 500,000+ queries Bitcoin - 12/16/2020 - 500,000+ queries Spotify’s yearly release of “Your Top Songs” has been gaining popularity over the years. Take a look at what this feature does for search interest in the brand every December. AirBnB went public and Bitcoin hit a record high last month (and it keeps increasing)! Fall and Winter Sports Our last section of the year is focused on sports. Just over a third of the queries that made the daily top 3 were related to sports, which is typical of pre-Covid months. The list of the 2 Million plus queried phrases includes mostly NFL-related keywords. Russell Westbrook - 12/2/2020 - 2,000,000+ queries Steelers - 12/6/2020 - 2,000,000+ queries Cowboys vs Ravens - 12/8/2020 - 2,000,000+ queries Browns - 12/14/2020 - 2,000,000+ queries Raiders - 12/17/2020 - 2,000,000+ queries Alabama football - 12/18/2020 - 2,000,000+ queries NFL scores - 12/19/2020 - 2,000,000 + queries Steelers - 12/21/2020 - 2,000,000+ queries Dolphins vs Raiders - 12/26/2020 - 2,000,000+ queries Maybe when we can attend live games, we’ll see this sports-focused distribution more often in our monthly reports. Check out Google’s Year in Search 2020 if you haven’t already. It is powered by Google Trends so if you have been reading this series regularly, much of it won’t be news to you. Thanks for reading. If you liked this article, we invite you to learn more about our SEO services. Until next month.

AMPlifier - Social Media Industry Update - Week of January 11, 2021

Welcome to the AMPlifier – a spotlight on the latest and greatest industry updates. Whether you want to learn more about this week’s marketing trends, the newest updates to your favorite social platforms, or simply what meme is currently taking the internet by storm, then read on. You never know what you might learn. INSTAGRAM TESTS NEW STORIES LAYOUT ON DESKTOP Instagram is testing out a new format for the display of Stories on the desktop version of the platform, which is designed to make it easier to scroll through the various Stories from the profiles you follow on the bigger screen. Read More SNAPCHAT RELAUNCHES PARTNER SOLUTIONS PROGRAM TO PROVIDE MORE ASSISTANCE OPTIONS FOR ADVERTISERS Snapchat has re-launched its marketing partner program, which redefines its two partner categories to better clarify the types of assistance and guidance options available. Read More LINKEDIN ADDS NEW 'PRODUCTS' TAB ON COMPANY PAGES TO HIGHLIGHT SPECIFIC PRODUCTS LinkedIn has announced a new 'Products' tab for Company Pages, which will provide a dedicated space for businesses to showcase their product offerings, and highlight key features, via their LinkedIn presence. Read More That’s a wrap on this week’s feed. Stay tuned to see what happens next.